Throw light on the importance of Israel-Palestine peace process for India. Should India play a mediator role in the same? Give arguments to support your view point.

Any successful peace process to be long lasting must address the four core issues that have plagued the peace process, West bank settlements, Israeli security, Palestinian refugees and Jerusalem.
Importance of peace process for India
Greater flexibility in the diplomacy
The tussle between Israel-Palestine, India’s historic commitment to Palestine and emerging opportunities in India-Israel relations has resulted in constraints in effectively dealing with both Israel and Palestine.
Restructuring West Asia policy
The tussle on the Israel –Palestine forces India to do a balancing act in the west Asia policy. This tussle can be avoided if there is a long lasting peace between India and Palestine.
Preventing Radicalism
Israel-Palestine tussle is being used a tool by fundamentalists and radical groups to satisfy their hidden agenda and vested interests. Peace between Israel and Palestine will aid in establishing a long lasting peace process.
Strategic partnership with Israel
Israel is the key military supplier for India. Peace process will aid in augmenting the military and economic cooperation with Israel without hesitations.
Strengthened relations with US
India’s support for Palestine is one of the frictional elements in the India-US relations. Israel Palestine peace process will strengthen the India-US relations.
Should India play the role of mediator?
Yes

  • After the US decision to move its capital to Jerusalem its credibility as an impartial mediator has taken a hit. India can fill in that space.
  • It will strengthen the standing of India as one who can provide alternatives and solutions to the problems haunting the world. This will boost the claim of India’s membership at UNSC.
  • Israel-Palestine has intra-regional ramifications in the Middle East. India has a unique advantage of having a sound and stable relations with all the major powers in the region, Israel, Saudi and Iran. This provides for a greater opportunity for India to resolve the crisis amicably.

No

  • The situation is highly complex in the Middle East. India would lose out more than it would gain through its attempts of mediation.
  • India always stood the ground against Pakistan’s demand for third party mediation in the issue of Kashmir. India’s mediation will give more buyers for the Pakistan’s demand in international arena.
  • The situation is highly volatile. Though Muslims are minority they are in sizable numbers in India. India’s interference on the issue may result in rising extremists and fundamentalists activities threatening both internal and external security.

India has an advantage in the region and it can put to use its advantage by acting as facilitator rather than a mediator. International agencies like UNO are more suitable to mediate for an inclusive and sustainable peace process.

Question for UPSC Mains:
Throw light on the importance of Israel-Palestine peace process for India. Should India play a mediator role in the same? Give arguments to support your view point. {250 words, 15 Marks}

Published: April 28, 2018 | Modified:June 27, 2019

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